BENTON – A 59-year-old former pastor of a Franklin County church was sentenced Wednesday in Benton federal court to 10 years in prison after a jury found him guilty earlier this year of attempted enticement of a minor child.
Mark Allen Fitzpatrick was pastor of Greater Life Sanctuary Church in Benton. He was arrested in 2020 following an FBI sting targeting child exploitation.
The arrest came after Fitzpatrick traveled to a residence in Marion, Illinois for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity with what he believed was a 15-year-old juvenile male named “Cody”.
FBI agents had set up the meeting and intercepted him before placing him under arrest. Federal agents had set up a profile on a dating site posing as the juvenile male.
Fitzpatrick had allegedly engaged in sexually explicit text conversations that included Fitzpatrick sending pornographic photos of himself.
Upon completion of his 120 month sentence, Fitzpatrick will have to complete five-years parole and register as a sex offender.